Charity Clothes Collection Symposium will address charity bag crime

Fundraising Standards Board and Institute of Fundraising event on 14 September will advise on how to tackle clothing bag thefts and fraudulent collections

Institute of Fundraising
Institute of Fundraising

The Fundraising Standards Board and the Institute of Fundraising have arranged a meeting next month to address the issue of people stealing charity clothing bags and making fraudulent collections.

The Charity Clothes Collection Symposium will take place in London on 14 September. Nick Hurd, the Minister for Civil Society and Tracey Crouch, Conservative MP for Chatham and Aylesford, will give keynote speeches.

Crouch secured a debate in parliament last year on the problem of bogus charity bag collectors.

A FRSB statement about the event says it will advise delegates on what can be done to minimise future bag thefts and on how to help supporters recognise legitimate collections.

Charities can attend the event at a cost of £35 per person.

The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau, which recently opened a desk to investigate charity clothing fraud, the Trading Standards Institute, the FRSB and the IoF will give presentations.

Alistair McLean, chief executive of the FRSB, said complaints about bogus collections had increased by 100 per cent over the past year.

"The impact of a loss of confidence in such an important fundraising method is significant and we need to do everything we can to re-establish trust, helping supporters distinguish between bogus and legitimate collections," he said.

Louise Richards, director of policy and campaigns at the IoF, said it was up to charities to reassure the public that it was still safe to give in this way.

"More and more members of the public are looking to the charity sector to help differentiate between legitimate and bogus collections," she said. "Best practice standards are the hallmark of those who collect clothes for charity legitimately."

More details about the event here. Places are limited to 100 and restricted to three per organisation.

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